3 Holiday Retail Trends and 1 Keyword: Marketplaces

It’s crunch time. Near and far, merchants are busy preparing to roll out their holiday shopping strategies across multiple channels.

In 2015, we have seen new marketplaces, increased loyalty, and additional membership opportunities. We have also witnessed marketplaces shift their focus to providing value for their customers.

As we head into the holiday season, here are three retail trends to be thankful for and how to make them work for you.

Popular marketplaces such as Amazon and Jet will continue to grow, and customers will continue to shop on the marketplaces that offer the best product selection and prices.

As a result, we will see even more of a push to reach and engage shoppers in marketplaces. This is evident in the rise of customer loyalty programs and aggressive offers, such as lightning fast delivery and daily deals. The perfect testament to the age of the deep discount was Amazon’s first Prime Day, which took place on July 15, 2015. This revolutionary e-commerce event resulted in explosive growth for retailers due to the advertising and promotions surrounding Prime Day.

Jet’s launch also made a splash in the online space. The marketplace already has 500,000 active users and that number is increasing daily. Their biggest competitive advantage is price. Rather than taking a commission from sellers, Jet passes all savings along to their customers.

Retailers have seen success with sourcing great products from manufactures, and retailing them on the marketplaces that are offering the best perks to their consumers. In other words, bring products to where the consumers are, rather than bringing the consumers to you.

Marketplaces will offer even more enticing perks for consumers to further increase customer loyalty.

Faster shipping options on more items, a wider offering of daily deals, and ease of ordering are popular strategies being used to win over consumers. Jet is appealing to all by offering free memberships and site-wide sales. Amazon continues to make it easier for consumers to receive their products at a rapid rate. With the introduction of same-day shipping and Amazon’s Prime Now, the possibility of receiving a product within one hour of ordering became an unprecedented perk for consumers.

These consumer perks can also be great perks for retailers. By using Fulfillment by Amazon, for example, retailers selling on the Amazon marketplace can offer Prime Shipping to consumers, therefore increasing their sales and product discoverability on Amazon.

The increase of omnichannel retailers (such as brick and mortars having more of a focus on expanding their online presence).

The world of online retail is abuzz during the holiday season with an increased amount of deals running for longer. The online consumer has a wider selection of deals to choose from than ever before.

Naturally, omnichannel retailers find great success in reaching more customers by integrating a better online strategy. Omnichannel retailers are in the ideal position to participate not only in in-person shopping holidays, such as Black Friday but also engage in the infamous ecommerce holidays such as Cyber Monday and Green Monday.

Emerging leaders in the world of retail will continue to be the ones with the best software solutions. The retailers who invest in software solutions will be able to scale and grow at the fast pace the industry demands. Retailers with software solutions are also positioned to have better insight to market demand and trends.

These are the tools that will enable retailers to make better business decisions and enjoy prosperity in the ever-growing world of online retail.

Josh Neblett is co-founder and CEO of etailz.

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